Mar 5, 2024 - News

Kennedy Expressway construction to return for second phase

Traffic backed up on the Kennedy Expressway.

The Kennedy downtown. Photo: Justin Kaufmann/Axios

After a months-long reprieve, the second phase of construction on the Kennedy expressway begins Monday.

The big picture: The $150 million construction project is being rolled out in three phases, with hopes of lessening the impact on one of Chicago's busiest expressways.

  • Illinois' Department of Transportation announced the next phase would start earlier than planned thanks to the mild weather.

Zoom in: Phase 2 is all about the express lanes. IDOT will close inbound and outbound express lanes for the rest of 2024 and intermittently close exit ramps like Montrose and Irving Park Road.

  • The Randolph Street ramp to the outbound Kennedy will be closed during this phase as well, while cleaning and painting of Hubbard's Cave will squeeze lanes in both directions.
  • As the project restarts, most extra lane and ramp closings will occur nightly after 9pm.

Flashback: The first phase was brutal for Chicagoans, who sat in long traffic jams and dealt with clogged side streets.

What they're saying: IDOT recommends traveling during non-peak hours and using public transportation.

What's next: This phase is expected to last all summer. The whole project is on track to be finished in 2025.

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